All posts by Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Native American presence in the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area – Press Release 12/31/14

December 30, 2014

For immediate release

WHAT: Native American presence in the MPNHA.

WHEN: Deadline not specified

WHERE: Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

CONTACT: Monte Bona, MPNHA Exec. Director – (801) 699-5065

EMAIL: montebona@hotmail.com

WEBSITE: http://www.mormonpioneerheritage.org, www.uen.org.

FACEBOOK: Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Native American Heritage and Presence

By: Steven J. Clark

Richfield, UT: A trip down the Mormon Pioneer Heritage Highway (U.S. Hwy 89) not only puts travelers in touch with rural settings that harken back to the earliest days of our pioneer roots, but also allows travelers a brush with history that extends much farther back.

Monte Bona, Executive Director of the MPNHA, says that the Highway 89 corridor is home to a rich Native American history, dating back thousands of years. “We want to view the Native American influence in the MPNHA not just in its historical context,” Bona said, “but also in the context of how their culture and traditions contribute to our society today.”

Fairview Museum, Fairview Utah, Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Just one block east of Highway 89, at Fairview, UT, is the Fairview Museum that houses, among other things, the huge skeleton of a prehistoric Mammoth, found during the excavation of Huntington Reservoir. The skeleton is the centerpiece of the museum, but in the surrounding halls is one of the state’s best collections of pictures and artifacts detailing the presence of a significant population of Native Americans, primarily Paiutes, in Sanpete Valley.

Native American Fremont Tribe Pit House Entry Utah Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Further south, the Sevier Valley has both an ancient and a modern Native American history. The ancient part is preserved at the Fremont Indian State Park, located on Interstate 70, a few miles west of the Highway 89 turnoff to Panguitch. The museum houses artifacts and presents displays of the ancient Fremont’s living conditions, while the park’s hiking trails lead to preserved petroglyphs and the ruins of ancient building structures. Fremonts are thought to have inhabited the area at approximately the same time the Anasazi cultures flourished further south and east in Arizona and New Mexico.

Sevier Valley’s contemporary Indian history is reflected by the presence of the Koosharem Band of Paiute Indians, who occupy two communities in the county. The first is a collection of homes found right in the heart of Richfield City. Were it not for the sign on the east side of North Main Street that declares the presence of a small, subdivision-size reservation, few would even know of its presence.

Travelers on Interstate 70 at Joseph, UT see a collection of seven or eight homes on the west side of the freeway and assume it’s just a far-flung subdivision someone from Joseph decided to develop. But it’s actually reservation land, and the homes are occupied by Koosharem Band Paiute families.

Mystic Hot Springs Monroe, Utah Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

There are special places near the town of Monroe, in Sevier County, where hot mineral water bubbles out of the ground. They are marked from a distance by the yellow and gold colored soil and rocks that show the mineral traces left by the hot springs over millennia. One spring is commercially developed and calls itself Mystic Hot Springs. The other is only slightly developed, with soaking tubs and a fire pit.

Historians say that prehistoric Indians considered the unique water features to be sacred, as evidenced by the rock art, artifacts and ruins found in the area. In more modern times, Mormon pioneers used the water for soaking pools, with many users claiming that the water had special healing properties.

According to Bona, the MPNHA, is consulting with Native Americans in the area regarding the organization’s intent to develop an interpretive center at one of the hot springs. “Native Americans used these hot springs long before Mormon pioneers arrived,” he said. “We want to be sure we treat them with the dignity and respect they deserve, not just from our viewpoint, but also from theirs.”

At the extreme southern end of the MPNHA, Highway 89 Alt, brushes past the Kaibab Paiute Band Reservation at Kanab, Utah’s sister city, Freedonia, AZ, while the regular Highway 89 route through Page, AZ, crosses into to the vast Navajo reservation and skirts the Hopi reservation that is completely surrounded by the Navajo homeland.

Bona says that he hopes the MPNHA signs placed along Highway 89 will put travelers in mind of the fact that there is not just a Mormon pioneer history in the area, but also an important native peoples’ history as well.

(Uncropped, unenhanced images are available upon request in electronic format (.jpeg)). MPNHA is if federally recognized, non-profit organization dedicated to education and historic preservation within the MPNHA)

ATV “Run” of Scenic Manti Canyon Planned – Press Release 8/7/2005

DATE 08/07/2005 7:28 PM
The incredible scenery of Manti Canyon and the Manti LaSal National Forest will be the highlight of an ATV run Aug. 19 and 20.The Manti Scenic Mountain ATV Tours are expected to attract ATV enthusiasts, dealers and others to the city for two-days of riding, exhibits, performances, a parade and more. Each day, local guides will help riders make their way through some 40 miles of intermediate ATV trails in the canyon and forest areas. Participants should bring cameras, binoculars and lots of water.Highlights of the two-day event include dinner in the park on Friday followed by musical performances and a Main Street parade. On Saturday, there will be a guided tour, “rest stops,” and a poker run. Prizes will be awarded at the end of the second day. A complete schedule of events is listed below. Information is also available on the ATV Utah website, www.atvutah.com .

August 19th: Sheep Trail Guided Tour (a portion of the ride requires advance riding skills)

7 – 8:30 a.m., Breakfast at the Historic City Hall, 200 North Main in Manti. Late registration will also be held at this time and location. T-shirts and tickets for the dinner and rides will also be available at this location.

9 a.m., Leave the LDS Stake Center for the sheep trail ride.

Noon, Lunch at 12 Mile Camp Ground.

1 p.m., Ride continues through the rustic Six Mile Canyon

4 p.m., Ride concludes at the LDS stake house

6 p.m., Dinner for trail riders and sponsors

7 p.m., Entertainment by Cindy Simmons and Mary Kanaphus

8 p.m., Assemble for the Main Street Parade at the City Park

8: 30 p.m., ATV Main Street Parade

August 20, Family Day Trail Ride and Poker Run

7 – 8:30 a.m., Breakfast at the Historic City Hall, 200 North Main in Manti. Late registration will also be held at this time and location. T-shirts and tickets for the dinner and rides will also be available at this location.

9 a.m., Leave the LDS Stake Center

10:30 a.m., Rest stop at Fox Jet Reservoir.

12:00 Noon, Lunch at Duck Fork Reservoir.

1 p.m., Continue tour thru the high mountainous area.

2:30 p.m., Rest stop at Fox Jet Reservoir

4 p.m., Arrive back at the starting point, prizes awarded for the poker run.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Get Ready to Rendezvous in Mt. Pleasant – Press Release 6/3/2005

DATE 06/03/2005 12:38 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Get Ready to Rendezvous in Mt. Pleasant

Mt. Pleasant’s 6th annual Blackhawk Mountain Man Rendezvous will be held July 1 to 4 at the Sanpete County Fairgrounds. The popular four-day festival attracts hundreds of shooters, traders and enthusiasts from throughout Utah and other parts of the United States. The event is part of Mt. Pleasant’s Hub City Days and is open to the general public. It includes a Dutch-oven cook off, muzzle-loader shootouts, exhibits, trading, displays, candy cannon explosions, tomahawk and knife-throwing contests, frying pan tosses, kids games, Native American dancers, historical re-enactments and more. Many participants also camp out in authentic teepees and wall tents.A main attraction is “Traders Row” that includes historic items like those made and sold at Mountain Men Rendezvous before 1840. Traditionally at rendezvous, “flat landers,” people who did not live in the mountains, would come to the rendezvous and wander through to see what was for sale. Items that are likely to be available for purchase include handmade leather goods, clothing, tin ware, bead work, bags, belts, pipe bags, and wooden boxes.Festivities begin Friday, July 1 with a Dutch-oven cook off at the Mt. Pleasant city park. Judging will be held at 7 p.m. On Saturday, July 2, there will be muzzle-loader rifle shoots at 1 and 2 p.m. Additional shoots will be held on Sunday, including shotgun and pistol shooting. On Monday, July 4, there will be primitive demonstrations, music, kids games, food, fun and more. A raffle for a muzzle-loader rifle and other prizes will be held at 4 p.m.

The rendezvous was started and is planned yearly by David and Pat Gonzalez, who are longtime enthusiasts of Mountain Men rendezvous, with help from the Sanpete County Heritage Council. Pat Gonzalez herself produces numerous items that she sells at rendezvous, including bead work, boxes covered in animal hide, and leather and wool dresses.

For more information, contact the Dave Gonzalez, (435) 462-0152; Lynn Mikesell, (801) 785-5269; or Mt. Pleasant City, (435) 462-2456.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Pilots Gearing Up for Annual “Fly In” – Press Release 5/27/2005

DATE 05/27/2005 12:16 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Pilots Gearing Up for Annual “Fly In”

Pilots from all over Utah, the Intermountain West and beyond will be landing in Mt. Pleasant City the weekend of June 3 to 5 for the annual “Sanpete Fly In” at the municipal airport.The event is organized each year by Dave Fullmer, who been the volunteer manager Mt. Pleasant’s airport for more than a decade. “Every year, I try something new and different to stir things up,” he says. This year, there will be an aircraft show, helicopter and hot air balloon rides, a barbecue and more.

There will also be a special “hanger talk” by Ron Jones, who served as a pilot in Vietnam, Friday at 7:30 p.m. in the airport’s main hanger. Jones flew more than 1,400 combat hours in Vietnam in fixed and rotary wing aircraft and earned numerous military awards including the Silver Star, Bronze Star and Vietnam Cross of Gallantry. He has also volunteered for more than 50 years with Boy Scouts of America.

As well, a “Young Eagle Rally,” will be held during the weekend. It’s put on annually by the Experimental Aircraft Association. Aimed at enticing young people to aviation, the group offers free airplane rides to children as a way of getting them exciting about flying.

The weekend kicks off Friday with a 6:30 p.m. barbecue and Jones” talk at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, there will be an 8 a.m. breakfast, followed by paid hot air balloon rides. At 10 a.m., the aircraft show and open flying begins, as well as paid helicopter rides. Lunch will be at 12:30 p.m.

The fly in is just one of the many initiatives Fullmer has started in hopes of the volunteer attracting recreational pilots to the area. He hopes to make improvements and add attractions, including setting up a campground at the airport for pilots. “It would be something totally unique,” he says. Fullmer started thinking up ways to attract more pilots into the region after state funding for small airports was eliminated a few years ago. Currently, Mt. Pleasant’s municipal airport is home to a few recreational and business-use planes, with most of its general business coming from a local flight school.

For more information on the Fly In or about the Mt. Pleasant airport, contact Fullmer at (435)462-3620 or in Salt Lake City at 801-966-0562. Information about the fly in is available online at www.sanpeteflyin.org . Fullmer may also be reached via email at tpjr@cut.net .

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* Note to media: Fullmer, a licensed pilot, is willing to take interested reporters on ultra light aircraft trips. Please contact him directly to arrange an excursion.

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Great Basin Experiment Station Restoration – Press Release 5/23/2005

DATE 05/23/2005 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Great Basin Experiment Station Restoration

In 1912 a research station was created nine miles up Ephraim Canyon, which later became known as the Great Basin Experiment Station. The mission was to find the causes and a remedy for the summertime floods that had been devastating the communities and farms below. For the following 60 years, the Station was in the forefront of watershed and rangeland research. In time, after researchers moved on, the old station sat virtually unused and fell into disrepair.Determined to preserve this important part of the community’s and the Nation’s heritage, Snow College, the USDA Forest Service, and the city of Ephraim began working together to find a way to preserve and use the facilities. Through the foresight and vision of those involved, the old Station was given an expanded role and rededicated in 1992 as the Great Basin Environmental Education Center.

During the summer of 2005 the center will host workshops including Mythology in the Night Sky, Dutch Oven Cooking, Geo-caching OHV ride, Utah’s Native Plants, Back Country First Aid and several Star Parties. We also accept groups who want to use the facilities for educational conferences, youth service projects, or other purposes. The center can accommodate 42 people.

For more information and to register visit www.snow.edu/gbeec or call us at 435-283-7261.

 

Where we are & how far it is to:

Logan, Utah . . . . . . . .   205
Moab, Utah . . . . . . . . .  225
Ogden, Utah . . . . . . . .  155
Provo, Utah . . . . . . . . . . 75
Salt Lake City, Utah . . . 120
St. George, Utah . . . . . .225
Mc Donald’s . . . . . . . . . . 10
The Nearest Mall . . . . . .  75
Peace and Quiet . . . . . . .  0
Pure Spring Water . . . . . . 0
A Warm, Friendly Staff . .  0

 

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Spring City’s Annual Heritage Day May 28 – Press Release 5/15/2005

ATE 05/15/2005 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Spring City’s Annual Heritage Day May 28

This year Spring City’s Annual Heritage Day will be held on Saturday, May 28 and include a tour of historic homes and an art and antiques show.The entire town of Spring City is designated as a National Register Historic District due to its large concentration of historic houses, barns, log cabins and outbuildings built by English and Scandinavian pioneers.

Fifteen homes and buildings are included in this year’s tour. Tickets cost $10 for adults and $5 for children and are available at the Old Spring City School.

The art and antiques show will include paintings of current Spring City artists including Osral Allred, Lee Bennion, Kathy Peterson, Linda Budd, Susan Gallacher, M’Lisa Paulsen, and Cassandria Parsons. In addition, this year’s show will feature “Art Squared,” a wall of one foot square paintings by these and other artists and nationally known Utah artists, including Michael Workman and Brian Kershinik, that will be auctioned during the day.

Breakfast and lunch will also be available at the City Bowery on Center Street.

Proceeds from Heritage Day go to support ongoing efforts to save and restore the Old Spring City School, a 100-year-old Victorian structure that has stood proudly in downtown Spring City for more than 100 years. It is featured on city council letterhead and is prominently displayed on the city’s logo.

Built in 1899, the school has eight classrooms, four on each level, as well as a large attic space, complete with windows. At one time, it housed all the grades, and was even used as a middle school and high school. A “new” elementary school was built next to the Historical Old School in 1920 and uses for the old school began to diminish. Eventually, the old schoolhouse became a make-shift storage facility for the school district. It hasn’t been used as a school since the 1950s.

Several years ago, friends of Historic Spring City started raising money to save the building, including adding the historic home tour and art sale to Heritage Day events to help raise money. The group also received a grant from the National Parks Service (Save America’s Treasures program). Plans call for using the building as a community center.

For more information on Spring City Heritage Days, contact Kay Watson at (435) 462-2211.

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Scandinavian Festival a Celebration of History, Heritage – Press Release 5/14/2005

DATE 05/14/2005 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Scandinavian Festival a Celebration of History, Heritage

The 200th birthday of storyteller Hans Christian Anderson will be celebrated at this year’s Scandinavian Heritage Festival and Conference May 26 to 28 in Ephraim.The popular annual event, which combines food, fun and heritage, attracts thousands of people to Sanpete County every year, many of whom travel along U.S. Highway 89, the Heritage Highway.

The conference celebrates Mormon pioneers from Scandinavia who colonized Central Utah in the 1800s and the estimated 600,000 Utahans who can trace their ancestry to Scandinavian immigrants.

Sanpete County’s culture has been greatly influenced by settlers who arrived first in the Salt Lake Valley from the Scandinavian countries and then were assigned to colonize central Utah. Many were farmers, carpenters, stone masons, cabinetmakers and furniture builders. The architecture of their farm buildings, cabins and houses were influenced by construction techniques and building forms from back home, uniqueness that is still present today.

Many local residents dress in Scandinavian costume for the annual festival, which provides an opportunity for people to learn about the influence of Scandinavians in Utah; connect with their Scandinavian roots; experience art and culture; and taste great food.

Events include a parade, golf tournament, a 5K run, softball tournament, storytelling, bread making and activities such as rock climbing and pony rides. There will also be live music, an art show, street dance, and other attractions. The festival begins with an afternoon golf tournament on Thursday.

Events will be held from noon until 11:30 p.m. on Friday, May 27, and from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 28. Display and food booths will line College Avenue between 100 and 300 East from noon until dark on Friday and from 9 a.m. until dark on Saturday. There will also be numerous opportunities to sample heritage cooking, including a “Little Denmark Supper” and a barbeque turkey dinner.

The festival also includes a special Scandinavian history conference at Snow College from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday and Friday headed by Brigham Young University professor Lynn Henrickson. The purpose is to give participants an understanding of the Scandinavian influence in the development of the West. The conference includes keynote speakers and workshops. It is held on the campus of Snow College in the historic Noyes Building’s Founders Hall. For more information or to register, contact Kim Cragun, (435) 283-4747.

For more information on the Scandinavian Festival and a complete schedule of events, visit the website, www.ScandinavianHeritageFestival.com .

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Sanpete County Parades to Feature Hotrod, Antique Cars, Ugly Trucks – Press Release 5/6/2005

DATE 05/06/2005 9:05 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Sanpete County Parades to Feature Hotrod, Antique Cars, Ugly Trucks

If you are an antique car, a hotrod car or even an “ugly truck” enthusiast, the place to be May 13 and 14 is Sanpete County.Two events being held that weekend will highlight antique and hotrod cars and worn-out, beat-out pick-up trucks.

On Friday, May 13, there will be an antique car and a hotrod car parade in Manti at 7 p.m. It is part of the annual Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s Rat Fink Reunion, which honors the life of renowned artist/car designer Ed Roth. Roth was famous for designing and building hotrod cars and for creating the cartoon characters the Beatnik Bandit and “Rat Fink” in the 1960s.

The parade will feature both hotrod and antique cars. Roth was known for building one-of-a-kind show cars and is famous for his “plaster and fiberglass” creation method. His original “Tweety Bird” Rat Fink car is currently being restored after being in storage for more than 30 years.

Roth died in Manti on April 4, 2001, at the age of 69. His wife, Ilene Roth, decided she needed to find a way for people who loved and respected her late husband and his work to honor his memory. She came up with the idea for the reunion and it is now an annual event. This year it is being held May 12-14.

People interested in being in the May 13 parade should meet in the parking lot of Kent’s Market in Ephraim at 6:30 p.m. More information about Roth’s cars can be found at the website www.mrgasser.com.

On Saturday, May 14, Mt. Pleasant City will host an “Ugly Truck” parade at noon down Main Street. The parade is part of the annual Rhubarb Festival, which literally honors the rhubarb, and Soap Box Derby races, which will be held following the parade.

The parade features, well, ugly trucks. Past entries have included beat-up and rusted-out trucks, trucks that are more than 50 years old, vehicles with weird paint jobs and even those with funny wheels. The only requirement is the truck must be able to make it down Main Street by its own devices.

Past parade participants have said that truck owners often take pride in the dents, marks and other “battle wounds” on their trucks because they are memories of where it has been and what’s been done with it. Ugly Truck contests have gained in popularity over the years and are now featured events throughout the United States and Canada on their own or as part of other festivals and fairs.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Tree Utah Helps Plant Another “History” Chapter – Press Release 4/29/2005

ATE 04/29/2005 1:56 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Tree Utah Helps Plant Another “History” Chapter.

Tree Utah continues to plant history in the cities and towns along U.S. Highway 89, this time at Mt. Pleasant’s historical Wasatch Academy.Officials from Tree Utah visited the 130-year-old academy May 1 and helped students, faculty and staff plant 24 trees on campus, including many historical varieties. Wasatch Academy is one of Utah’s oldest schools, covering 17 acres and boasting some of the oldest buildings in the region. In fact, the entire campus earned national historical designation.

This latest planting is the most recent regional project initiated by Tree Utah, a non-profit, citizens group dedicated to tree planting and education. Previously, it has partnered with the Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance and Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council to plant historical trees along U.S. Highway 89 from Fairview to Kanab.

Tree Utah also visited communities along the Heritage Highway, offering people the chance to purchase the same historical trees that they are planting, including maple, oak and ash and a variety of shade trees. The agency also held formal tree planting ceremonies in many communities, as well as a series of free workshops to provide advice and education about caring for and planting trees. It has also awarded grants to numerous communities throughout the state to encourage tree planting.

Trees are an important part of Utah’s heritage, Justina Parsons-Bernstein, executive director of Tree Utah, has said. The group appreciates the opportunity to help plant more trees along the historical highway and its associated cities and towns, she says.

In addition to its partnership with Tree Utah, the Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council and Utah Community Forest Council previously commissioned Brad VanDyke to take an inventory of historical trees in the area. The trees were identified, their condition noted and a historical analysis conducted. The trees and stories of their pasts were entered into a data base for use as both historical and geographical landmarks.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Annual Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth’s Rat Fink Reunion May 12-14 – Press Release 4/26/2005

DATE 04/26/2005 7:46 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Annual Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth’s Rat Fink Reunion May 12-14

Hundreds of people are expected in Manti for the third Annual Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth’s Rat Fink Reunion May 12-14. The event honors the life of the renowned artist/car designer Ed Roth.Roth was famous for designing and building hotrod cars and for creating the cartoon characters the Beatnik Bandit and “Rat Fink” in the 1960s. He died in Manti on April 4, 2001, at the age of 69. His wife, Ilene Roth, decided she needed to find a way for people who loved and respected her late husband and his work to honor his memory. She came up with the idea for the reunion and it is now an annual event.

The event is held at the museum that Ilene Roth created for her late husband, located at 404 East 300 North in Manti. The reunion will be held from noon to 9 p.m. May 12; from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on May 13; and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. May 14.

The museum, which is an addition on Ilene Roth’s home, will be open during the reunion. It includes displays of Ed Roth’s art work and other memorabilia. The museum is also open to the public year-round by appointment.

The reunion will also include musical performances by the bands Kindred Spirit, All That Jazz and Plan B, as well and displays of show cars. There will also be air brushers and pin stripers at the reunion all three days. The “stripers” will pin stripe “anything conceivable, as well as air brushers.

Other special events include a car parade on Friday night from 7 to 8 p.m. on Manti’s Main Street. People who want to be in the parade should meet in parking lot of Kent’s Market in Ephraim at 6:30 p.m. On Saturday, there will also be a Dutch oven dinner at 6 p.m. at Roth’s home. Videos and slides of Ed Roth’s life will also be shown each evening of the reunion.

Ilene Roth met her husband after he moved to Manti from California in 1987. An avid hotrod enthusiast from the age of 12, Ed Roth started out by fixing up old cars in his garage. He then moved on to building cars from scratch and quickly became known as an artist rather than a mechanic, with his creations earning the title “sculptures on wheels.” He financed his passion by making cartoons and T-shirts, including drawings of cars and monsters driving cars. His most famous cartoon character was a rodent named Rat Fink, which became very popular in the 1960s and was featured on posters, T-shirts and more.

In addition to the reunion, Ed Roth is being honored this year in a new documentary by Canadian film maker Ron Mann. The movie, Confessions of a Hot Roddin’, Pinstripin’, Kustomizin’ Teenage Icon is set to be released later this year. Mann met with both Ilene and Ed Roth about the film in 2000. “It was Ed’s dream to have the movie made and it will soon be a reality.”

For more information about the Ed “Big Daddy” Roth Rat Fink reunion, contact Ilene Roth at (435) 835-2393.

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Rhubarb Festival, Soap Box Derby Set for May 14 – Press Release 4/21/2005

DATE 04/21/2005 2:30 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Rhubarb Festival, Soap Box Derby Set for May 14

Utah’s only celebration dedicated to honoring the rhubarb and one of the state’s few remaining Soap Box Derby races will take place in Mt. Pleasant Saturday, May 14.The Annual Rhubarb Festival, sponsored by Native Wines and area merchants, will be held from noon to 6 p.m. at the winery, 72 South 500 West. The event literally honors the rhubarb, a common garden plant used in making food products ranging from pies, bread and wine to jams, jellies and ice cream sauce.The Soap Box Derby races are part of the Rhubarb Festival and begin following a noon “Ugly Truck” parade down Main Street.

The festival will also include cheese and wine tasting plus a variety of foods and drinks made from rhubarb, including a new addition this year, “rhu-burgers.” There will be contests for rhubarb eating and rhubarb pie baking and awards for the best food products in a variety of categories, judged by a panel of “food experts.” There will also be a ugly truck contest, vendors, sidewalk sales, live music and street dancing are all part of the day long activities. The “Rhubarb Queen” and “Defender of the Rhubarb” will also be crowned.

The Rhubarb Festival was started several years ago by Native Wines owners Winnie Wood and Bob Sorenson and attracts crowds of visitors to the region each year. Native Wines uses locally grown and gathered fruit from heirloom trees, gardens and the countryside in its products. For more information, phone Native Wines at (435)462-9261.

The Soap Box Derby races were added to the festival in recent years. The event was designed to bring the once-popular races back to the streets of Mt. Pleasant. The races are sponsored by the Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council and local resident John McClellan.

Soap Box Derby races used to be a popular event in Sanpete County, with a lot of local residents taking part as children. The races first became popular in the 1930s. As to be expected, Soap Box derby races have grown in popularity and sophistication over the years, with contests now full of regulations and restrictions. But Sanpete County’s races remain true to the original “anything goes” soap box derby philosophy. Cars can be made of any material, including plastic, wood, metal. They should be about six to seven feet long and about three feet wide. Drivers should range in age from about eight to 16 years.

“Anything goes,” says McClellan, who also oversaw last year’s festivities. “And we get anything and everything too, from a two-by-10-foot board with wheel barrel wheels, to streamlined, competitive cars. We leave it open so that the kid who just has a set of lawnmower wheels can come and have fun too. There is something for everyone.” For additional information, contact McClellan at (435) 462-3808.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Airport Manager Has Lofty Goals Aims to Attract More Pilots into Region – Press Release 4/11/2005

DATE 04/11/2005 9:28 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Airport Manager Has Lofty Goals Aims to Attract More Pilots into Region

David Fullmer has big plans for Mt. Pleasant’s little airport.Fullmer, the volunteer manager at the municipal airport, hopes to make some improvements and add new facilities aimed at attracting recreational pilots.” If we truly want to get people thinking that Sanpete County is a great place to see and visit, we need to widen the road a little, so to speak,” he says.

Once word gets out that there is a place that caters to those who fly for pleasure, the city and county will benefit from the increased traffic, he says.

Fullmer is working with city and county officials to try and make his ideas reality. A recreational pilot himself, he says it wouldn’t take much to entice recreational pilots to come into the region for an afternoon, a day or even longer.

“Our airport is unique among rural airports because it’s so close to town,” says Fullmer, who has managed the airport for more than a decade. Most rural airports are miles away from the nearest town, making it difficult for pilots to access services such as restaurants or motels.” But our airport is only about a half a mile from the edge of town, it gives us a lot of options.”

What Fullmer has in mind includes exploring setting up a campground at the airport for pilots. “It would be something totally unique. There are a lot of pilots, and entire networks of pilots, who would fly to a place just because they know that when they get there, they can put up a tent and stay overnight,” he says.

Of course, he adds, there are countless other attractions in the area that would add to the appeal factors: snowmobiling in the winter, fishing, mountain biking, and other recreational opportunities.

“Once the airport becomes known in the pilot community in Utah and the Intermountain West as this place that caters to pilot and as a great place to visit, all kinds of things can happen,” Fullmer says.

He also hopes to make aviation fuel available at the airport. “I’ve driven pilots into town before to purchase automobile fuel because there was nothing else,” he says. “To get more pilots to come here, we have to have fuel.” He also hopes to have rental cars available at the airport.

Currently, Mt. Pleasant’s municipal airport is home to a few recreational and business-use planes, with most of its general business coming from a local flight school.

Fullmer says he starting thinking up ways to attract more pilots into the region after state funding for small airports was eliminated a few years ago. One program he started is an annual “fly in” where pilots from all over come to Mt. Pleasant over one or two weekends.

This year, the fly-in will be held over the first two weekends in June. “Every year, I try something new and different to stir things up,” Fullmer says.This year, the first weekend will be for radio-controlled aircraft and ultra light planes, and the second weekend will be “for everyone else,” Fullmer says. This includes the “Young Eagle Rally” that is put on annually by the Experimental Aircraft Association. Aimed at enticing young people to aviation, the group offers free airplane rides to children as a way of getting them exciting about flying.

Mt. Pleasant city council member Monte Bona says attracting recreational pilots to the city and county is line with the larger economic development plan for the city’s Industrial Park, located near the airport. Having the airport become a hub of activity for recreational and even business pilots would be a natural fit with the Industrial Park, which has a goal of attracting new people and businesses to the community. The park is now in Phase 2 of development.For more information about the Mt. Pleasant airport, contact Fullmer at (435)462-3620 or in Salt Lake City at 801-966-0562. Information about the fly in is available online at www.sanpeteflyin.org. Fullmer may also be reached via email at tpjr@cut.net.

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* Note to media: Fullmer, a licensed pilot, is willing to take interested reporters on ultra light aircraft trips. Please contact him directly to arrange an excursion.

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Talking, Listening to the Animals Key to Young Horse Trainer’s Success – Press Release 4/4/2005

DATE 04/04/2005 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Talking, Listening to the Animals Key to Young Horse Trainer’s Success.

Ruth (Mellor) Livingston’s gift for working with horses was spotted by one of the best-known trainers in the country when she was only 15 years old.She was enrolled in a clinic taught by horseman Richard Shrake, renowned internationally for his resistance free training techniques that involve learning to understand what a horse is saying.

“After the clinic was over, he called me up and said he’d like to take me under his wing,” Livingston said. She started studying with Shrake and, at age 17, became the youngest-ever person to be nationally certified in resistance free training. She traveled around the country with Shrake training and hosting clinics.

“I guess I was just a natural at it,” she says with a laugh. Livingston’s love for horses developed at age 10 when she moved to the small town of Chester after her mother had remarried. Her stepfather was involved with horses and fostered Livingston’s interest in the animals.

Now, at age 23, she runs her own successful horse training center, Silver Dance Ranch, in Moroni. She works with horses in need of all kinds of training, from getting them ready to accept riders to preparing them for competition and to figuring out complex behavior issues. She also holds horse clinics around the state, including a session for “spooked horses” in Lakeshore later this month and a youth clinic in Ephraim in May.

“I love the idea what I can take a 1,250-pound animal and get inside of its head and have it communicate with me,” says Livingston, who has three show horses of her own. “I can work with that animal, train it and teach it to do all kinds of amazing things that it otherwise would never have done.”

While she laughs off comparisons to Robert Redford’s character in the popular movie “The Horse Whisperer,” a key to Livingston’s training program is watching, listening to and learning from the animals, the same kinds of techniques utilized in the movie.

“Horses do talk to you. You can see so much in their body language, and you learn to pick up on that,” she says. “A flick of an ear, a look in the eye, a swish of the tail, all of these little things can tell you a lot about the animal’s frame of mind and whether they are ready to listen and learn from you.”

Learning to know what the horse is telling the person working with him is what resistance free training is all about, Livingston says. “You work with the horse’s mind first, building respect and confidence between horse and trainer, using the lowest amount of resistance possible,” she says. The goal is to help people and horses develop a relationship through patience, kindness and understanding.

The most common problem people have with horses is that they don’t fully understand the workings of the horse world, Livingston says. “A lot of people think that horses are like other pets, and that if they feed them, take care of them and love them, the horse will love them back. But with horses, respect must be taught first, and love comes out of that,” she says. In the horse world, animals push one another around and a hierarchy is established, she says. The most domineering horse becomes the most respected and trusted horse and emerges as the leader. “All of the other horses love that horse because they trust him; they know that he will take care of them.”

Because trust is a vital part of the horse world, it’s also crucial in the horse-training world. “For horses to fully trust you, you have to you become one with the horse in a sense, you have to earn their trust,” Livingston says. “Most of the problems with horses are based on trust issues: a horse gets pushy, dominant or scared, and problems arise from that.”

When she is working with a horse, Livingston has the animal live at her ranch where she feeds, cares for and works with them daily. During the winter, she can accommodate up to six horses at a time, and during the warmer months, up to 11. “While I am working with a horse, I allow the owners to come in and observe and take lessons to figure out what is going on with the horse,” she says.

For more information on the Silver Dance Ranch, phone (435) 851-6758 or email silverdanceranch@hotmail.com.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Travel and Heritage Council Planning to “Advertise” County – Press Release 3/21/2005

DATE 03/21/2005 10:08 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Travel and Heritage Council Planning to “Advertise” County

The Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council plans to “get the word out” about everything the region has to offer in the way of attractions, outdoor recreation, events, preservation projects, artists, heritage products and more.The council this week discussed a strategic media, advertising and public relations campaign aimed at enticing people from all around the state to visit Sanpete County. It was developed by Carlislie Exchange, a company that specializes in media and marketing and has promoted Sanpete County events in the past. The campaign will focus on the Wasatch Front and rural Utah.“Sanpete County is an area that lends itself to promotion,” says Greg Carlislie. “Small town such as Delta, Cedar City, Logan, Roosevelt, Vernal and Brigham City are made up of families with children who like to travel to new destinations and outdoor recreation spots.”

Carlislie presented his outline for the campaign to the travel and heritage council this week. The campaign includes radio, TV and newspaper advertisements, as well as outdoor signs and cross-promotions.

Carlislie explained that because his company handles numerous clients from all around the state, they are able to secure discounted advertising rates, which will allow the county to best utilize its advertising funds. As well, Carlislie plans to use special promotions and trades with many TV and radio stations in exchange for advertising.

The campaign also includes teaming up with local schools who are learning about Utah”s history and heritage to provide information about Sanpete County, and working closely with Snow College to promote attractions and events.

As well, Carlislie is suggesting exploring sharing costs with companies who might have an interest in promoting certain aspects of the county, such as snowmobile manufacturers.

The campaign will also include contests, prizes, on-location live broadcasts, interviews, and promotional give-aways. Carlislie Exchange currently promotes the Scandinavian Festival, Manti Pageant and Fourth of July festivities in the county.

Funding for the campaign will come from the transient room and restaurant taxes, and local business owners, including those running motels and bed and breakfasts, are encouraged to provide feedback and input on the plan.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Giddy up! First-ever ‘Horse Motel’ Opens in Sanpete County – Press Release 3/13/2005

DATE 03/13/2005 1:17 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Giddy up! First-ever ‘Horse Motel’ Opens in Sanpete County

Horse owners living in or visiting Sanpete County now have a new option if they want to include their animals in their various activities and excursions. The county’s first official “horse motel” is now open for business, providing accommodations for horses by the night or by the week.Kris and Fred Burns opened the motel on their 26-acre ranch located about a mile and a half from the town of Fountain Green and adjacent to Bureau of Land Management property.

“There are a lot of people who like to visit the area and have horses,” Kris Burns says. “But if they want to bring their horses along with them to ride or hunt with, there is no where around where you can keep them just for the night or a few days. Most places that board horses want something more long term.”

So Kris and Fred Burns decided to open a 12-stall horse motel. Food, water and “mucking” are provided, and the horses can check in for just one night or for an extended stay. “People can pick up their horses and ride right up into the mountains from here,” Kris Burns says.

Pretty soon, horse owners will even have the option of staying right near their animals. The Burns are in the process of opening an RV Park near the horse motel on about 10 acres of their land. Scheduled to open in June, the park will include 60 sites with sewer and water hook-ups, as well as 24 camping spots at a nearby location.

The Burns will rent out tee-pees, tents and other camping supplies. They also plan to encourage guests to visit the animals they keep on their property, including llamas, a miniature horse and a burro. “We want staying here to be a family experience, where people who don’t know a lot about farming or ranch life can experience what it’s like,” Kris Burns says.

The Burns came up with the idea for the horse motel while traveling around the state with their own horses. It many parts of Utah, they have no where to leave their horses. But when they visit St. George, they discovered a place where they could check their horses into a “motel” for the night. “We thought it was something that was needed near where we live,” Kris Burns says.

Having a new indoor horse arena and community center built in Sanpete County would help with the new business, she adds. Local horse enthusiasts are looking to construct a new facility that would let them exercise, train and hold horse-related events and activities year round.

“It would bring more people with horses into the area, which, of course, would be a benefit for us,” Kris Burns says. “But it would help the entire county because there would be more tourists and people coming through. There is such a need for this kind of facility. We are getting more and more horses in the area and fewer places to work them.” The region currently has more horses than it did back in the days when the animals were the main source of transportation.

She says building a larger facility in a new location would allow for both indoor and outdoor arenas, as well as provide other options such as community centre and a race track. “Right now, people in the county who have race horses have no where to work them.”

For more information on the horse motel or RV Park, contact Kris or Fred Burns at (435) 445-3303.

For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Mt. Pleasant’s Pioneers to be Honored March 19 – Press Release 3/9/2005

DATE 03/09/2005 1:15 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Mt. Pleasant’s Pioneers to be Honored March 19

The founding fathers of Sanpete County’s hub city will be honored during a special luncheon March 19 at the Mt. Pleasant Recreation Center, 10 N. State Street.The annual Pioneer’s Day luncheon will be held at 11 a.m. and include a reception, box lunch, and program. The program will feature the Orem performing group “The Good Time Singers.” Two longtime Mt. Pleasant residents, both in their late 80s, will also share their reminisces about growing up in 146-year-old town. “It is really a celebration of the city’s heritage,” says Elna McKay, a member of the Mt. Pleasant Historical Association, which sponsors the annual event. “It is a way for us to honor the pioneers who settled the area. We invite anyone who has ever lived in Mt. Pleasant to attend, and anyone who is interested in Mt. Pleasant. We are also always interested in having new members join,” she says. Cost for the luncheon is $5.The annual celebratory lunch is one of the two main programs supported by the Mt. Pleasant Historical Association. The group also looks after Relic House, a museum that displays relics ranging from pioneer quilts and clothing to blacksmith shop tools and equipment.

The association recently renovated a bedroom in the house, including wallpapering, sanding the floors, and cleaning and repairing linens and furniture. “We’ve worked very hard on it,” McKay says.

The group also just purchased a historical log cabin that they plan to move on to the property. “We have a lot of old blacksmith tools and equipment and we needed a place to display and store them,” McKay says.

Relic House was one of the first homes in Mt. Pleasant to be built outside of the fort that housed the area’s first settlers. Mt. Pleasant City was officially founded in 1859. Nearly two-thirds of the city’s earliest settlers were Scandinavian pioneers who immigrated to Utah from Canada, the United States and England.

For more information on the Pioneer Day Luncheon, contact McKay at (435) 462-2787.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Sanpete County Aims to Add More ‘Preserve America’ Communities to its List – Press Release 2/20/2005

DATE 02/20/2005 7:36 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Sanpete County Aims to Add More ‘Preserve America’ Communities to its List

Sanpete County is the proud home of two of Utah’s four Preserve America communities, and local preservationists and government leaders would like to see the numbers increase this year. Preserve America is a White House initiative that encourages and supports community efforts to preserve cultural and natural heritage. It is chaired by First Lady Laura Bush. Currently, 220 communities throughout the United States carry the designation, including Mt. Pleasant and Manti.“We’d like to see cities and town all throughout Sanpete County become Preserve American communities,” says Monte Bona, a member of the Mt. Pleasant City Council and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance. Communities apply for the designation through the national agency. The most recent communities were announced by Mrs. Bush earlier this month, and the next quarterly deadline for applications is March 1. “We are encouraging our communities that have projects and programs that convey their national heritage to apply for the program,” Bona says.

Mt. Pleasant received its designation in August 2004 and Manti in November 2004. Mt. Pleasant was recognized for its preservation efforts and enjoyment of its historical and cultural resources is an important part of the country’s heritage. “You honor our nation’s past and inspire and educate for the future,” Mrs. Bush wrote in a letter to the community. “As your community shares its story with residents and visitors, you set a great example for others.” Manti was honored for its use of Old City Hall was a museum and travel and information center, and praised for the more than 4,200 community volunteer hours that went into revitalizing the building.

The use of Old City Hall as a travel information center is an important component of Manti’s participation in regional efforts to promote tourism along Highway 89, the spine of the proposed Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area. Reuse of the building is also a cornerstone of an ongoing Main Street Enhancement Project.

The Manti Historic Preservation Commission, which was established in 2003, was also recognized by Preserve America for playing a vital role, as is the effort to have parts of the city listed in the National Register of Places as a historic district.

“Manti is being established as our county seat,” Bona says. “This designation, as well as the development of the Mormon Pioneer Heritage Center, which is being developed in coordination with Snow College and Utah State University, is among the reason’s the city is key to our development efforts.”

The proposed Mormon Pioneer Heritage Center will coordinate research and extension efforts in recreation, heritage tourism and agriculture, and is closely connected to the proposed bill by Sen. Bob Bennett to establish a Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area.

The goals of Preserve America include a greater shared knowledge about the Nation’s past; strengthened regional identities and local pride; increased local participation in preserving the country’s cultural and natural heritage assets; and support for the economic vitality of communities.

Communities designated through the program receive national recognition for their efforts. Benefits include use of the Preserve America logo, listing in a government Web-based directory to showcase preservation and heritage tourism efforts, and eligibility for special existing and proposed Preserve America grants and funding through various government agencies. For more information, including brief profiles of the communities, application forms, and procedures, visit www.PreserveAmerica.gov/communities.html.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Life of “Big Daddy” Roth Subject of New Movie – Press Release 2/12/2005

DATE 02/12/2005 4:19 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Life of “Big Daddy” Roth Subject of New Movie

The life of Manti’s “Big Daddy” Roth is coming to the big screen.Toronto film maker Ron Mann is making a documentary about the late Ed Roth, who was famous for designing and building hotrod cars, including the Beatnik Bandit, and for creating the 1960s cartoon character Rat Fink and related paraphernalia. Roth, who moved to Manti from California in 1987, died in April 2001 at the age of 69.

The movie, Confessions of a Hot Roddin’, Pinstripin’, Kustomizin’, Teenage Icon, is set to be released later this year.

“I am so happy to have a movie that will preserve Ed’s legacy,” says Ilene Roth, Ed Roth’s widow and the Sanpete County auditor. She and her late husband met with Mann in 2000 when he came to Utah to discuss the film. “Ed was very excited about having a movie produced to spotlight his creations with Rat Fink and fiberglass cars. It was his dream and it will soon be a reality.”

An avid hotrod enthusiast from the age of 12, Ed Roth started out by fixing up old cars in his garage. He then moved on to building cars from scratch and quickly became known as an artist rather than a mechanic, with his creations earning the title “sculptures on wheels.”

He financed his passion by making cartoons and T-shirts, including drawings of cars and monsters driving cars. His most famous cartoon character was a rodent named Rat Fink, which became very popular in the 1960s and was featured on posters, T-shirts, rings and more.

Every year, Ilene Roth holds a “Rat Fink Reunion” celebration to honor the life of her late husband. This year’s reunion will be held May 12-14. The weekend attracts hundreds of his fans from around the world. One of the reunion’s special events is an open house at the “museum” Ilene Roth built on to her house to showcase Ed Roth’s creations. His art work is framed and hanging on the walls, and other memorabilia is on display. The museum is also open to the public year-round by appointment.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Highway Alliance Has High Hopes for Bennett Bill This Session; Keeping Eye on State Tourism Legislation – Press Release 2/7/2005

DATE 02/07/2005 12:23 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Highway Alliance Has High Hopes for Bennett Bill This Session;
Keeping Eye on State Tourism Legislation

The third time is the charm. At least, that is what members of the Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance are hoping for with Sen. Bob Bennett’s National Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area bill.The legislation, which would designate a 300-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 89 as a heritage area, is scheduled to be heard by the Senate during its 109th session this year. The bill has passed the Senate twice previously, but both times was bogged down in the House of Representatives and failed to pass before Congress adjourned.

“Rep. Chris Cannon has assured us that he will work very hard to get the bill heard in the House this session,” says Monte Bona, a member of the alliance and Mt. Pleasant City Council. “We are hoping that the bill is approved by both houses this year. It has been a long wait.”

Meanwhile, Bona, along with other local preservation and government officials, is keeping a close eye on legislation before the Utah Legislature — Senate Bill 7. It pertains to promoting tourism in Utah, and Bona hopes part of its focus will be on heritage tourism. “Utah has long been known as a place to ski and visit beautiful national parks, and we support continuing to promote these assets,” Bona says. “But we’d also like to see the state focus on its heritage tourism attractions.”

Heritage tourism is the fastest-growing segment in the tourism industry in America. Utah has some of the most outstanding heritage tourism attractions in the country, including Temple Square, Old Deseret Village and This Is The Place State Park, and attractions along U.S. Highway 89 from Cache Valley to Kanab, Bona says. “The cities and towns along the heritage highway are the best remaining examples of how Mormon pioneers colonized in Utah.”

Highlighting the region’s heritage was the impetus behind the Bennett bill, he adds. “The purpose of the designation is first to recognize Mormon heritage, and second, to promote tourism and economic development in the area,” Bona says.

The National Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area would include six counties: Sanpete, Sevier, Piute, Wayne, Garfield and Kane. It also includes the All-American Road Highway 12 and Highway 24, which branch off from U.S. 89. The national designation would mean that the counties would receive $10 million over the next decade in federal funds for marketing, preservation and related projects.

Currently, the Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance promotes attractions in the cities and town along U.S. Highway 89 in a number of ways. It has created a brochure “The Artisans and Crafters of Utah’s Heritage Highway 89,” that features the products created by artists and craft makers along the highway.

The alliance has also produced documentaries, including Stories Along U.S. Highway 89, which features the people, places and history of Highway 89, and includes in-depth interviews and historical re-enactments. The alliance has also organized tours for writers and the general public, and promotes special events that take place along the historical route and celebrate the region’s heritage.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Fountain Green Hosts “Bald Eagle Day” Visitors will see, learn about the nation’s bird – Press Release 1/29/2005

DATE 01/29/2005 4:26 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Fountain Green Hosts “Bald Eagle Day”
Visitors will see, learn about the nation’s bird.

Sanpete County residents, along with people traveling down the Heritage Highway, U.S. Highway 89, will get a chance to see and learn about bald eagles Saturday, Feb. 5 as the Utah State Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) hosts its annual Bald Eagle Day.The event will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Fountain Green State Fish Hatchery, located one mile north of Fountain Green. A sign will be posted along the main roadways directing people to an access road that leads to the hatchery. Similar events are being held throughout the state the same day.

“Spotting scopes will be set up at each viewing site, and DWR biologists and volunteers will be available to help viewers spot eagles and to answer any questions they may have,” says Bob Walters, Watchable Wildlife coordinator for the Division of Wildlife Resources.

Displays also will be set up at each location and pamphlets and other materials about bald eagles will be available. Walters advises those attending to dress warmly and, if there’s snow on the ground, to wear waterproof boots.

For those interested in photographing the eagles a telephoto lens is a must, as the eagles will be some distance from the viewing areas. “Photographers who don’t bring the proper equipment and try to get close to the eagles for a better shot will most likely scare them away, losing their chance to photograph them and ruining the viewing experience for all those who attend,” Walters says.

Walters started Bald Eagle Day in 1990 as a way to introduce people to Utah’s wildlife. Since it began Bald Eagle Day has grown into Utah’s most well-attended, and one of its most enjoyed, wildlife-viewing events.

For more information about Bald Eagle Day, call Scott Root at 801-491-5656.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Wasatch Academy Celebrates 130th Birthday; Plans Events to Promote School, Heritage – Press Release 1/24/2005

DATE 01/24/2005 7:28 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Wasatch Academy Celebrates 130th Birthday;
Plans Events to Promote School, Heritage

Wasatch Academy, one of Utah’s oldest schools, is celebrating its 130th birthday this year, and students, faculty, parents, alumni and the greater community are invited to join in the festivities.Located in Mt. Pleasant, the academy was founded in 1875. Covering 17 acres in Sanpete County’s hub city, the academy boasts some of oldest building in the region. In fact, the entire campus, which includes classrooms, a gymnasium, dormitories, a large playing field, homes for faculty and a museum, has earned historical designation. It continues to be an attraction along Utah’s heritage highway, U.S. Highway 89.Special events to mark the 130th birthday include Parents’ Day Feb. 4-6, which brings students families to campus for a weekend of celebrations and excursions. This year, there will be a ski trip, a dinner and fund-raising auction. Parents will also attend parent/teacher conferences, and have opportunities to interact with their Childs teachers and classmates.

April 16, the school will hold its annual Founder’s Day, and events and activities will promote the history and future of the school. As part of its’ year-long birthday celebration, Wasatch Academy also hopes to increase awareness of its offerings in the community and throughout Utah. “We are very interested in finding more ways to promote the school within Mt. Pleasant and the entire state, especially in terms of how we fit in and contribute to the heritage highway,” says Vern Fisher, the school’s development director.

“We are interested in having people come see the campus and go on tours. For example, we have a museum that is quite amazing. We also have 12 original Stansfield painting displayed throughout the campus and 14 original Ansel Adams photos displayed in the new student center. The Ansel Adams photos were donated to the school by the artist (, whose grandson was one of our students.”

The private boarding school, which has a reputation for outstanding academics and individualized student attention, has some 146 students enrolled in grades 9 through 12. The academy, accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges since 1939, is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools and the College Board.

Wasatch Academy’s students come from 14 different countries and 24 states. About 14 of its students are “day students,” meaning they attend classes and school functions, but live with their families in the community. “We have kids from all walks of life, there are many different cultures represented,” Fisher says. “The diversity that the school helps bring into rural Utah is absolutely phenomenal.” Most of the students start in ninth grade and stay through their senior years. “In fact, just this week, the start of spring semester, we had 20 new students join us, most of them freshmen. With our retention rate, we expect most of them to stay for four years,” Fisher says.

Not only do students come from around the world, the school also has special international programs. One is its Tibetan scholarship. “Every four years, we get two new Tibetan students. They literally arrive here with nothing, they often come straight from refugee camps in Nepal,” Fisher says. “Two new students will soon be joining us soon, as two of our current Tibetan students are about to graduate. This is the second group of students we’ve had. Students who have gone through the program stay in the United States for school and then plan to return to their country.”

Another unique component at Wasatch is the interaction among students, faculty and staff. The school has about 50 full-time and 25 part-time employees, with 50 percent of the faculty and staff living on campus. Faculty and staff interact with students all day, including at meals and after-hours study sessions, often held in the faculty member’s homes in the evenings.

“There is excellent one-on-one time between students and faculty. The structure of the students’ life in regard to their study habits is one of Wasatch’s best attributes,” Fisher says. “Wasatch Academy is truly a community inside a community. For example, all meals are eaten in the dining hall. Families of our teachers and staff are all encouraged to join the students and teachers for meals.” There is also a day-care on campus for children of employees.

Students also mingle with the community, regularly going on outings and excursions such as shopping sprees, movies or ski trips. The school’s cross-country ski team participates with the public school’s districts’ team, and they are currently looking into creating a joint La Crosse team. “Throughout the years, we’ve had a good relationship and association with the city and public school district. Today there is a synergy coming together. We are working hand- in- hand for the betterment of the city as whole,” Fisher says.

The school also has extensive extra-curricular activities, one being its outstanding debate program. Last year, the school hosted the world debate championships, an event that attracted participants from around the world to Mt. Pleasant. Recently, Wasatch Academy was designed at the location for the National World debate semi-finals to be held annually. This year’s competition will be Jan. 21-23. “This is a permanent designation,” Fisher says, adding it is the first such honour for a Western U.S. school. For more information, visit Wasatch Academy’s website at www.wacad.org

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Film On Heritage Highway Wins Prestigious National Award – Press Release 1/17/

DATE 01/17/2005 12:02 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Film On Heritage Highway Wins Prestigious National Award

The film “Stories Along U.S. Highway 89,” produced by Rob Sibley of KBYU and featuring the people, places and history of Utah’s Heritage Highway, has earned “Gold Finalist” distinction at the annual MarCom Creative Awards.The prestigious MarCom Creative Awards is an international competition for marketing and communications professionals. It includes print, visual and audio materials and entries came from corporate marketing and communications departments, advertising agencies, graphic design shops and freelancers. The awards are part of the Communicator Awards, one of the largest, oldest and most respected competitions in the communications field.The film which was filmed along U.S. Highway, including in Sanpete County, includes in-depth interviews and historical re-enactments. It focuses on themes relevant to the Heritage Highway and features the natural landscape along the highway. The film was produced so that the individual segments can also run as stand-alone five-minute “infomercials” on public television stations.

The documentary focuses on 10 themes: Native Americans, Mormon pioneers, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Utah ghost towns, movie making, national parks and recreation areas, hidden treasures, John D. Lee, artists, and the Mountains Meadow Massacre.

It includes interviews with people who participated in the “Famous and Infamous Along U.S. Highway 89” lecture series. The series was held throughout the cities and towns along the heritage highway as a way of informing the public of the route’s history and influence.

Last year, Stories Along U.S. Highway 89 received a Best of State medal, the premier public forum for awards and recognition in the state of Utah. The competition is dedicated to promoting higher visibility and public awareness for outstanding individuals, businesses. The film has also won a prestigious Videographer’s Award.

The film premiered on BYU-TV worldwide TV and aired on KBYU-Channel 11.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502
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